Benjamin’s lovely peridot eyes turn suddenly to the paler green blanch of prehnite. His arms and hands and searching fingers snake around his stomach like wax on a Catherine wheel; he sinks against her, his boyish delight reduced to a lurking mnemonic shadow drowning in the rainy grey tones now trumpeting victory over his normal, healthy flush.
Instantly, she begins to look around for someone taller than the other guests. “… nibbles. Chair! Someone get my husband a chair, now!”
“Emily… River?” he manages as he fixates on all the concerned fishbowls, closing in, “I’ll be back in a moment. I’ve… got to go somewhere.”
She’s holding him up now. His legs are like bricks of deuterium with sandals on.
“Where are you going at this late hour?” she says softly as she pets his hair and grasps his face to her body as he slides.
Then he covers his hand, pushes the rose on his golden ring. Nothing happens.